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Zoopla: New estate agency sale stock has hit a four-year high

New Year momentum in the property market has carried into February and new listings are at a four-year high, Zoopla claims.

The portal reported last month that buyer demand in the first weeks of January was up 14% annually,  with sales agreed up 16%.

It said this trend has continued in February, with buyer demand running 11% higher than this time last year. 

Buyer numbers are up across all parts of the UK but London is firmly out in front, followed by the North East and North West regions, Zoopla said.

Sales agreed are up across all regions and countries of the UK and more than 10% higher in six regions led by London, the South East and Yorkshire and Humber, according to the portal.

The flow of new homes for sale is also 10% higher than a year ago and the highest it’s been since 2020, Zoopla said. New sellers are listing their homes at the fastest pace in the East of England, the South West and North East. 

Richard Donnell, head of research at Zoopla, said: “We expect rising activity to continue over the coming months. The market is better balanced between sellers and buyers than it has been for three years. 

“Despite reports that house prices are rising once again it’s important sellers keep their feet on the ground. The positive news is that finding a buyer is going to be easier for most sellers but more choice of homes for sale will mean greater room for negotiation.”

It comes as Chestertons  reported a 21% increase in the number of house hunters submitting offers for properties in January amid lower mortgage rates.

The agency’s latest data, comparing January to the same month last year,  also shows that 17% more properties were put onto the market for sale and 7% more owners have requested market appraisals.

Matt Thompson, head of sales for Chestertons, said:  “The boost in buyer activity is exactly what many sellers have been waiting for. 

“Buyers have become increasingly confident since December, when interest rates were held at 5.25% and mortgage rates started to come down. This sentiment carried through to January and with more properties now on the market, we expect to see increasing numbers of buyers, additionally driven by pent-up demand from those that did not feel comfortable moving forward with their search last year.

“We are seeing all types of buyers now entering the market, including first-time buyers, young couples joining forces to achieve a joint upgrade and people that live outside of the capital and require a pied-à-terre to avoid lengthy daily commutes.”


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